Excess phosphorus in the soil
The last thorny soil
issue I want to cover is phosphorus. Steve
aim for an equal amount of phosphorus and potassium in the soil, while Michael
Phillips thinks more phosphorus is better and recommends building
orchard soil to have twice as much phosphorus as potassium. On
the other hand, Harvey
that excessively high phosphorus levels cause a decline in mycorrhizal
fungi, which means that plants actually have a harder time finding enough
phosphorus and can experience a deficiency. In a worst case
scenario, extra phosphorus can even wash into streams and cause
eutrophication. Fertilizing with manure (especially chicken
manure) boosts phosophorus levels in the soil quickly, so the question
is --- should I be concerned about phosphorus excesses?
recommended phosphorus levels, it's clear that our native soil is low
on phosphorus, but that my preferred horse manure fertilizer has
increased levels within the vegetable garden beyond the recommended
range. Of course, if I was using Phillips' goal instead of
Solomon's, the vegetable garden would actually be considered deficient
in phosphorus like the rest of our homestead.
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